“Where Do We Go From Here, UMC?” is a weekly podcast featuring conversations between Rev. Molly Vetter and denominational leaders about the challenges ahead as we live toward a United Methodist Church that is fully inclusive of our LGBTQ+ siblings.
Despite the anti-gay policies that remain in our UMC Discipline, more and more of us continue to move forward with the work of full inclusion. Still, institutional barriers to change and the formation of a splintering denomination provide real challenge. So, as people committed to our grace-filled way of living the gospel, where do we go from here?
This podcast is produced by Westwood United Methodist Church, with partner support from other groups who are working for a more just and inclusive United Methodist Church.
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Rev. Molly Vetter is passionate about many things: building community with unlikely and diverse people, making the church more boldly welcoming, and caring for the earth. She was appointed Senior Pastor of Westwood United Methodist Church in 2019. She’s excited to serve a congregation with such a rich legacy of thoughtful engagement on social issues and such an incredible worship space in which to connect to the grace and mystery of our God.
In her personal and professional life, she loves planning events and trips, and enjoys experiencing them, too. She loves designing and making things, especially out of fabric or food or the internet.
Before coming to Westwood, she served for several years as lead pastor of Redondo Beach First United Methodist Church, and for 11 years as an Associate Pastor at San Diego First United Methodist Church. Molly received her Masters of Divinity from Claremont School of Theology in 2001. Commissioned as an Elder in 2001, she was ordained in full connection in 2004.
Outside of the local church, she’s enjoyed working with District Junior High Camps and Strength for the Journey, a retreat for adults living with HIV/AIDS in San Diego County. For many years, she led a weekly Bible study at the San Diego Rescue Mission Women and Children Center, and she has also guided Bible studies and taught classes for the California-Pacific Annual Conference and San Diego State University. She currently volunteers as the Communications Coordinator for the Grain Place Foundation, a non-profit that will inherit and continue her family’s organic farm in central Nebraska.
She’s really good at church meetings. Her work in the United Methodist Church has included serving as Chair of the Order of Elders for our Annual Conference, and as member of its delegations to General Conference in 2008, 2012 and 2016. As a Board member of the General Board of Church and Society, she supported work for Economic and Environmental Justice. She been a part of Faith and Order work of the National Council of Churches and World Council of Churches.
As an undergraduate, Molly studied Art History at Boston University, and spent a semester abroad in Niger, in West Africa. Molly is a graduate of North Platte High School in western Nebraska. Molly lives with her husband, Matthew Parker, and their son Jonah.